Bogus business rates and support grant scams targeting small businesses Image: AdobeStock_87212890

Central Bedfordshire businesses targeted by telephone and email scams

Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) is again urging small businesses to act with caution if they receive a suspicious telephone call or email regarding business rates or support grants.

It said that it has received further reports from local businesses who have received a telephone call, whereby the caller has claimed to be from “Central Bedfordshire Council”. The caller then requests a payment for a 2020/21 business rates bill or asking for the business’ full bank account details.

CBC says that it would never ask for bank account details over the telephone.

In some cases the caller has provided their bank account details for the payment and claimed the “council is currently closed” during the Coronavirus outbreak. CBC is not closed.

COVID-19 small business support grant email scam

In addition, CBC has also had reports of businesses who have received a bogus email regarding an application to register for a COVID-19 small business support grant.

The emails appear genuine and may look as if they were sent by GOV.UK or another official body. The email claims there has been a problem with the business’ application to register for a support grant and instructs them to click on a link to update their details.

If you receive an email like this, please do not respond to it or click on any links. Instead, just click delete.

For more information on COVID-19 small business support grants, please visit CBC’s website.

If you ever receive a suspicious telephone call or email and suspect it may be a scam, please report it to Citizens Advice by calling 0808 223 1133.